I was so happy to see an email in my inbox today that exclaimed “50 Great Books That Will Change Your Life”. I’m a super-fan of books and an even bigger fan of great books. And while my first thought was “Wow, that’s a pretty bold claim”, I must admit the list is pretty amazing. Check it out here.
And even if you are skeptical on the life-changing abilities of these books, I think you can at least agree that many of them are worthwhile (and possibly even necessary) reads for everyone.
My Shelfari “to read” list now includes many more books, ranging from classics I read many years ago but didn’t appreciate at the time (The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn) to quirky books that will be perfect for lazy days by the pool (The Inn at Lake Devine). And it was quite a nice little surprise to see Dandelion Wine on that list – a book I know all my fellow Heidelberg-ers who took freshman English read. Admit it, girls – it was a great book!
Happy reading, friends!
I’m catching up for the days I was out off town for work, so I focused on two areas today: my makeup bag and my closet (a work in progress).
1. My makeup bag:
I cleaned out 12 items from that bag, all of which I am sure have expired.
2. My closet:
Today I cleared out three pairs of shoes, three purses and an old iPhone case. I love those brown boots and the red high heels, but the boots got wet and shrank, and my darling puppy got ahold of the red shoes.
I’m en route to the airport, so I finally have time to post my Day 4 Clutter-busting post. I decided on my seven items as I was packing for Chicago.
No, the picture is not taken on an angle: that suitcase is just leaning because a wheel is missing. Ryan and I have one set of luggage, which has worked out just fine for us. When we travel together, we only need the one set, and it’s worked out that when only one of us is traveling, the other is home. But this past weekend, that was not the case, as Ryan was out of town Friday through Sunday at a friend’s bachelor party. I was going to use my old carry-on for my trip, but when I pulled it off the top shelf in the closet, I knew that old thing had seen its last day. I wasn’t concerned about getting a new carry-on, but I was really concerned why I had kept a roller suitcase that was missing one of its essential mobility functions. Clutter-bug alert!!
It didn’t take me long to find a purse and some shoes I haven’t worn in years to add to the pile. I tossed the suitcase but will be donating the shoes and purse.
I am so excited to get home to my boys! I’ve missed them so much. I snapped this shot while driving the boys home from daycare on Saturday. (Don’t worry – I was at a stoplight!) They are loving the new wheels.
Hello from Chicago! I flew in yesterday for a few days for work (blah), so the de-cluttering photos will have to wait until Thursday. I got rid of some great stuff over the weekend, including the suitcase I thought I was going to bring. Just wait until you see that baby.
Hope everyone has a wonderful beginning of the week!
Today I decided I needed to tackle the pots and pans situation in my kitchen. We recently bought a new set, so the old set was all but begging to be donated. But as luck would have it, a friend told me today – as I was literally packing up the old pots and pans – about another friend’s garage sale later this month. Is that serendipity or what?
My kitchen cabinets already feel more organized. Stay tuned for more kitchen de-clutterings – there’s plenty more work to do!
In 2011, I officially joined the “late 20′s” crowd when I turned 27. I remember that birthday and thinking how OLD saying I was in my “late 20′s” sounded.
(For everyone out there rolling their eyes, I’m sure there was a time when you thought “late 20′s” sounded old too! One of these days I’ll smarten up )
So as I near my last birthday in my 20′s (YIKES!!), I wanted to share a fun little comparison between life in your early 20′s compared to life in your late 20′s.
Some of them are silly (I never thought a guy dancing around with a lego head on was cool), but a lot of them are right on. I especially love the ones about gossip and diet/exercise. So true!
One thing this website doesn’t say: as fun as life was in my early 20′s, it had nothing on life in my late 20′s. And from what I hear, things only get better. Cheers to many more birthdays, readers!
Day 2 of the de-clutter challenge. Today was an easy day for me. As I was looking through my closest for something to wear to work, I came across a shirt I hadn’t seen in a while and thought “Huh. I forgot I even had this.”
The shirt had to go. I couldn’t remember the last time I wore it – and I couldn’t see myself wearing it again. I made up my mind to pick 6 more articles of clothing before I could change my mind, and just like that – more clutter gone.
Besides the clothes, I did get rid of one pretty big thing today. It makes me sad to even say it, but I finally gave in and got rid of the Red Boat.
That old girl has been with me for the past 6 years and has treated me so well. Ryan has been asking me for over a year to get a new car, but I just couldn’t do it. Now that I have, I honestly do feel really sad about it. I’m really going to miss her.
However, I didn’t think this counted as one of my “7 things” for the day, since I replaced my old car with a new one:
That beauty is a 2011 Buick Enclave. As a neurotic accountant, I cannot buy new cars (hello, immediate depreciation!), but this car is new to me – and it’s certainly newer than my old car. It drives so nice – almost nice enough to make me forget about the Concorde…
For the past two nights, I have been working on the filing system for our Bowers’s family binder system. It’s been Type A heaven over here. I am having way too much fun with this!
One of the reasons we sort through paperwork is to get rid what we no longer need. Or at least that’s the hope. I ended up with a pretty large pile to toss:
And that doesn’t even include the pile of items I need to shred. We sure have a lot of paper in this house! I’d say there is at least 7 items in that pile, wouldn’t you agree?
Day 1 of the Clutter Challenge, and I’m feeling better already!
I can’t believe it – but the Nashville marathon is over. For nearly five months, I was looking forward to the weekend I would get to spend in Nashville, and boy, that city did not disappoint. The weekend was filled with the good, the bad and the ugly. Fortunately, most of it was good, so the bad and the ugly are easy to forget.
We got to Nashville on Friday evening and headed straight to the expo. After we picked up our packets and got our beer garden bracelets, it was off to dinner. This is how we felt about McFadden’s, where we ended up for dinner:
Horrible service. Terrible food. Good beer, though, from what Ryan told us. Not our best decision of the weekend.
Saturday morning was race day! I woke up feeling nauseous, which was due to a combination of nerves and McFadden’s food.
The morning only got worse when we saw it was raining pretty steadily. Since we had to walk about a mile to get to the race shuttles, we asked the hotel for large trash bags to wear. This game-time decision ended up being the smartest thing we could have done, because the rain did not stop. The entire race. In fact, it got much worse. We even saw lightening and heard thunder at one point. Not exactly what you want to be going on at mile 9.
Unfortunately, I was miserable the entire time. The weather only compounded my hurt knee and lack of training. I can never thank Katie enough for sticking with me the whole time – and somehow smiling throughout. Despite the rain, there were a few things that made me happy during the race:
1. The people watching the race. I mean, WOW – you all deserve some sort of medal. The runners chose to be out in weather like that, but the spectators did not. I could not believe how many people were out there cheering, soaking wet with smiling faces. You all kept us going, and for that, we say THANK YOU!
2. The fact that Danni Allen was running the race too. That’s right: the winner of last season’s The Biggest Loser ran her first half-marathon in Nashville. And you know how big of a fan I am. I didn’t get to see her – but just the thought of maybe bumping into her kept me going. You can read more about that (and the marathon in general) here.
3. The spectator signs. I’ve run in and been a spectator for marathons in several cities, and I’ve noticed that the signs just keep getting better and better. We saw the usual (“Worst parade ever” and “Run, Complete Stranger, Run!”), but there were a few that I had never seen before that made me smile when I wanted to cry. Here were some of my favorites:
Chuck Norris never ran a marathon.
Don’t stop – people are watching.
Free bacon for runners.
(Katie didn’t see this one, but when I told her about it after the race, she informed me she would have stopped for that free bacon had she seen it.)
Your pace or mine?
Running: cheaper than plastic surgery.
There were many more that I can’t remember right now, but the fans of the Nashville marathon did not disappoint. I will say it again: THANK YOU!
Saturday afternoon involved eating pizza and napping. Then it was time for Jimmy Buffett! We went to Rippy’s, a bar on Broadway, before the show. There was a live band playing, and as soon as I saw the fiddle player I about squealed: it was Brad Paisley’s fiddle player, Justin! Brad Paisley has been my favorite country artist for 10+ years, and I’ve seen him and his band in concert enough to know what they look like. I was so excited! When the band took a break, one of the braver souls in our group went over to him. I’m not sure what he said, but somehow he got Justin to come over to talk to us. He was seriously so nice, and genuinely flattered that we knew him. He was nice enough to get a few pictures with us:
And if one celebrity spotting wasn’t enough, the next day we walked out of our hotel to this:
The crew of the show “Nashville” was filming some scenes RIGHT ACROSS THE STREET from our hotel. I danced when I saw this. Seriously. Unfortunately, no one else with me at the time likes the show, so they only let me gawk for a few minutes. How cool is that?!
I had so much fun with my cube-mate and fellow blogger, Amy. I’m going to miss spending too much time talking about Nashville, but I’m sure we’ll find something else to keep us busy.
I spent most of my time with this pretty lady:
This post would be obnoxiously long if I wrote about everything we did, so I’ll spare you all. Which is a shame, because we sure had fun!
And of course, I enjoyed the weekend with Ryan. Seeing him on the sidelines of the marathon is the only time I actually cried during the race. I would like to say they were mostly tears of joy, but that would be a lie. Thanks so much for your love and support these past months, babe!
What do you associate with the springtime? I think about rain, sunshine and, of course, spring cleaning. Now that my free time isn’t revolving around getting ready for Nashville, I’m itching to get my house in order. I have three main projects I want to tackle:
1. Paint (indoors) and landscape (outdoors). Both things I hate and therefore, both things I put off.
2. Put together a Bowers family binder filing system. I read about something like this here, and I thought “I’m pretty sure Ryan would be lost if anything ever happened to me.” This is of no fault to him: I like being in charge of things, and I’m a CPA, so naturally I handle the finances and taxes. And to be fair, I would have no idea what to do if the Internet stopped working or the alarm system started going off. And heaven forbid if my iPhone wasn’t working. Since we should both really know the in’s and out’s of our house, finances, etc., this system is a necessity for us.
3. De-clutter. This one is a big one. I don’t consider Ryan and myself to be hoarders of any kind, but we do have a lot of “stuff”. We’re both bad about hanging onto things for sentimental value, which I don’t see any problem with, as long as there is a place for everything. The problem occurs when that “place” becomes unorganized and starts spilling into other places.
I’ll share pictures of projects #1 and #2 as they are completed. I’m sure I’ll be asking for suggestions along the way!
In the spirit of de-cluttering, I wanted to share a challenge from one of the blogs I follow. Every day in the month of May, the blogger is getting rid of seven things in her house and is challenging readers to do the same. At the end of the month, that will be 217 things you can live without GONE. Wowza – that sounds like a lot, but I’m sure it will be easier than I think. I can mentally count at least 7 articles of clothing I should be donating, and I know there are way more than seven things I can get rid of on my desk.
I’m going to post my seven items daily (or almost daily), so readers, keep me accountable! Who is ready for the Great Clutter Purge of 2013?! Please join me!